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Coach’s Book of Frustrations Chapter 4 – Pro Lacrosse

0 - Published July 3, 2009 by in Pro Lacrosse

Professional lacrosse must reorganize and market lacrosse as a spectator sport in order to turn profits, fill stadiums and ultimately grow the sport. The recent loss of NLL and MLL teams has a very discouraging impact on the growth of lacrosse at all levels. Lacrosse, unlike most sports, peaks at the college level.

Playing professional lacrosse does not have the same implications that playing in the NBA, NFL, MLB or even the MLS or Professional Bowling Association has. Playing professional lacrosse is currently an honor and nothing more. Players have ‘real world’ jobs, limited practices, and empty stands to play in front of. For professional lacrosse to survive teams must find a way to get new fans while maintaining a profitable ticket price. A lot of NLL and MLL teams are facing a large problem with the relationship between filled stadiums and sold tickets.

 

Portland Lumberjax Crowd

As a former ticketing employee for a recent exile from the NLL, I have first hand experience with giving away tickets, selling tickets, and dramatically reducing ticket prices in order to fill the arena. In my experience as a ticketing employee I witnessed a lot of spoiled fair-weather fans at NLL games: Fans who wouldn’t come if the prices were above $10 a ticket and still complain that the tickets are too expensive; Fans who would take advantage of their season ticket holder benefits and threaten to not renew unless they could get free tickets to every game; Fans who used their ‘trained’ selfishness to unknowingly drive the team out of the league because the owner was losing millions of dollars. It is hard to call these people ‘fans’ but it is necessary because lacrosse needs as many fans as possible right?

Beaverton Youth Lacrosse Children are finally getting the option to pick lacrosse or t-ball as their first spring sport on the west coast. In my opinion this is one of the biggest steps lacrosse has ever had as a sport. Parents become interested in the game, former players pick up sticks again and word of mouth spreads lacrosse like wild fire. The professional ranks needs to make drastic changes to organize the leagues, earn money and become profitable business. The NLL has made a large step towards greatness with newly appointed Commissioner George Daniel. He has already begun a large make over for the business side of the NLL, which at this point is the most important side. So I ask my readers, what would you do if you were the new commissioner of the MLL or NLL? What can we do as fans to help our favorite sport make money? How can we help lacrosse survive at the pro level? The survival of the professional lacrosse is crucial for current youth, high school, and college players that dream of going pro. It’s time to reward their hard work with more than accolades and fill their bank accounts.

GEORGE DANIEL APPOINTED COMMISSIONER [NLL.com]

Read the other entries in our “Coach’s Book Of Frustrations” series: